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Stents Move Up to the Carotid

Executive Summary

Just as drug-eluting stents prevent heart attacks by maintaining the patency of coronary arteries, so do carotid artery stents prevent strokes by keeping carotid arteries open. Carotid artery stenting, like coronary stenting, is a minimally invasive, percutaneous procedure and both procedures use similar kinds of devices. The large cardiovascular device companies are all in clinical trials with carotid artery stents, but none is expected on the US market before 2005. Still, the market for carotids isn't likely to be nearly as big as that of coronary stents.

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At TCT, Cardiology Companies Invade Neurology's Turf

Having gradually chipped away at the patient base of surgeons, where are interventional cardiologists to go next? One answer: neurology. At this year's TCT meeting, two new areas of stroke prevention were discussed as potential growth opportunities. The first area is PFO closure: 25% of people in the general population have a congenital heart wall defect that is associated with cryptogenic stroke. In the other, left atrial appendage occlusion, to eliminate a pouch in the heart that can collect clots that cause stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation.

At TCT, Cardiology Companies Invade Neurology's Turf

Having gradually chipped away at the patient base of surgeons, where are interventional cardiologists to go next? One answer: neurology. At this year's TCT meeting, two new areas of stroke prevention were discussed as potential growth opportunities. The first area is PFO closure: 25% of people in the general population have a congenital heart wall defect that is associated with cryptogenic stroke. In the other, left atrial appendage occlusion, to eliminate a pouch in the heart that can collect clots that cause stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation.

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